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It is very important when choosing a wine to pair with the particular cut of meat that you consider the texture and marbling of that particular cut.
Matching wine and food is a delicate balancing act; both have qualities of texture that need balance when pairing. It is important to consider the texture of the food, method of preparation, and are there sauces involved? The following recommended wines have been chosen considering the marbling and texture of each cut of meat.
Most of us like to cook with or garnish grilled meats with steak sauce which is something to consider as well. One component of steak sauces is vinegar and this is a form of acid. We love to use sauces when we grill because of the acid as it brings out flavor in our food.
The Chuck Section: Hamburger has a higher fat content that is well suited for a nice fruit-forward Cabernet Sauvignon. The Cabernet varietal is a big, powerful red wine that is full in body, rich, and very flavorful. This wine imparts flavors of fruits, berries, currants, plums, and may also exhibit slight spicy nuances that go great with a grilled burger.
The Rib Section: A well marbled Rib Eye steak will pair well with a bold, spicy Syrah. Syrah is a big powerful full bodied wine, also known as Shiraz in Australia. Supple, smooth, rich with well mannered mellow tannins best describe Syrah. This wine can be slightly spicy, fruity like black cherries, or some may have a deep nutty flavoring, pairing well with a grilled Rib Eye.
The Short Loin Section: Filet Mignon is a lean, delicate cut that is well suited to a nice smooth wine with elegant body. Pinot Noir is the perfect wine to complement your Rib Eye. When aged in oak it will have subtle sweetness reminiscent of raspberries with undertones of vegetation and chocolate. Pinot Noir is smooth, full of flavor, and has a beautiful bouquet. This will be a mouth watering choice to pair with Filet Mignon.
The Sirloin Section: Boneless Sirloin is less tender but has more flavor than other cuts of meat from the loin section. A good Malbec from Argentina is perfect for this choice. This wine is fruit forward, medium bodied, and flamboyant. A little spice and tannin in this wine make it an outstanding choice to pair with a nice sirloin.
The Round Section: An Eye of Round served pepper-crusted and rare is a very lean, and slightly chewy. This will pair well with a Red Blend from the Rhone Valley of France or Columbia Valley of Washington. The balance and structure of these wines makes them a great complement for this cut of beef.
The Brisket Section: Brisket slow cooked on the barbeque will be buttery, smoky, and has flavor calling for wine with red fruit and fig aromas. Sangiovese from the Napa Valley or Chianti Classico from Italy will be spicy, medium bodied exhibiting nuances of cherry and raspberry flavor with just the right amount of tannin, acid, and fruit. These are two very nice wines to pair with Brisket.
The Flank Section: Thin Flank Steak is best slowly grilled over a low flame. The smoky flavors from the grill and intense beef flavor compliment a Zinfandel. This full bodied, fruit forward, and spicy wine is one that California does very well. Berries, cherries, tobacco, oak, and vanilla, this wine has it all and will be delightful to pair with Flank Steak.
Stoke up the grill, choose your beef, open the wine and let it breath so it presents well to your guests. With your perfect pairing they’ll think it’s a dinner fit for royalty. Visit www.WineGuyMike.com to learn more.